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The British first settled on the Island in 1627 – before then it was uninhabited.

Sugar plantations were established on the Island until 1834 -when slavery was abolished.

Throughout most of the 20th Century the economy remained heavily dependent on sugar, rum, and molasses.

The gradual introduction of social and political reforms in the 1940s and 1950s led to its complete independence from the UK in 1966.

In the 1990s, tourism and manufacturing surpassed the sugar industry in economic importance.

Agricultural products include: sugarcane, vegetables and cotton while its industry boasts of: tourism, sugar, light manufacturing, component assembly for export.

The Coat of Arms was adopted upon independence in 1966 as decreed by Queen Elizabeth II and has a Helmet on top and a Golden Shield below. There is a gold band surrounded on both sides, which represents the sea and sky of Barbados.

The beautiful Golden Shield in the coat of arms carries two "Pride of Barbados" flowers known as Poinciana and the "bearded" fig tree, which was common on the island and may have contributed to Barbados being so named.

Again the Coat of Arms depicts two animals supporting the Golden Shield. On the left is a "dolphin", signifying the fishing industry and sea-going past of Barbados. On the right is a “pelican”, symbolic of a small island named Pelican Island that once existed off the coast of Bridgetown.

Above the Golden Shield is the Helmet of Barbados with an extended arm of the first Barbadian clutching two sugar-cane stalks. The "cross" formation made by the cane stalks represents the cross upon which Saint Andrew was crucified. In fact Barbados celebrates its Independence Day on Saint Andrews day!!

On the base of the Coat of Arms reads "Pride and Industry" in reference to the country's motto!

Did you know that the Barbados Flag represents three principles of democracy that is: “Government for, of and by the people”?

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